Assier

The remains of the Château
d’Assier show that this was a
Renaissance palace on a par
with the finest châteaux of
the Loire. It was built by
Jacques Galiot de Genouillac
(1465–1546), an artillery
commander under Louis XII
and François I. Of the
building completed in 1535,
only the entrance wing, with
a spectacular portico doorway,
survives. The decoration
consisted of mythological and
classical scenes, Renaissance
figures and military emblems.
The carved staircase is the
finest feature of the interior.
The church contains an
effigy of Galiot and a curious
relief on the exterior refers to
the art of warfare. Uniquely in
France, the dome over the
burial chapel has triple
groined vaulting that forms
an elaborate star pattern.

Château d’Assier
Tel (05) 65 40 40 99. # Apr–Oct;
Nov–Mar: call to check

 

Environs
The 16th-century dovecote
on the Lacapelle-Marival road
stands 11m (36ft) high and
holds 2,300 nesting chambers.
The birds enter and exit via
the open lantern on top.
Near the village are two
dolmens known as the Table
de Roux and Bois des Boeufs.
There are 11 of these burial
chambers, dating from around
1,500 BC, in the vicinity.